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With one semester down, SA president continues focus on ORU’s history

Zay Williams, Courtesy Photo
Zay Williams, Courtesy Photo

Zay Williams took office as President of Student Association the beginning of Fall 2014. He brought vision for ORU to embrace its heritage, and leadership for campus spiritual revival. As the semester draws to a close, he looks back on his presidential transition and the achievements accomplished alongside the staff.

Williams’ main focus for the fall semester was telling the story of Oral Roberts University. He researches a fact about the university or its founder each week, then shares that fact during staff meetings.

“I do this hoping that they will be inspired with event ideas for the entire student body,” said Williams. “The more we can share [what our history is], that’s where school spirit and pride will come from. It gets everyone believing in who we are.”

Student Association has introduced new events this fall, inspired by telling ORU’s story. Golden Days, which included various activities and competitions for students, gave a nod to the university’s heritage and was intended to spark school spirit. The Prayer Walk was also a new event that connected to William’s desire for spiritual revival on campus.

Williams envisions events with a reason beyond simply providing activities.

“Normally when students think of SA, they think of one particular event,” said Williams. “I would rather be known for a movement and having students know what our school is about.”

Williams has been trying to increase the frequency of Open Dorms and working with the Athletic Department (for the potential of creating pep rallies).

“It’s been a process,” said Williams.

He admits the transition into the presidency was not quite what he was expecting.

“The position description was vague, so it took me some time to get adjusted,” said Williams. “Next year there may be organizational and roll changes, so the transition can be smoother.”

Zach Swalley, the Executive Cabinet of Programs, is currently serving in Student Association for his third consecutive year.  He notices distinguished qualities in Williams’ leadership.

“Every president comes in with his own agenda,” said Swalley. “But Zay knows the heart of S.A. and has brought his agenda alongside S.A.’s mission. He has a great listening ear and is open to advice and criticism.”

Creating unity within the staff is important to Student Association’s effectiveness as a whole. Swalley explained all presidents have different ways of building community, but Williams takes a different approach.

“Zay has brought unity through Christ,” said Swalley. “We can always find unity through other things, but Christ is how everything truly holds together. We are founded in Christ.”

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